The notorious Irishman has explained exactly how Floyd Mayweather can leave the ring with his respect after they finally throw down on Saturday night.
Combat sports can be a funny old business. For weeks, months and even years two select individuals can literally despise the very sight of each other. From the press-conferences and weigh-ins to the actual night of the fight, the tension that can brew and ultimately boil over is perhaps unlike anything that can be found in any other sport.
The crazy thing is that, for the most part, when all is said and done inside the ring, cage or octagon, a bond is formed. Hugs are exchanged and after stepping in and competing in the world’s rawest form of competition, both fighters go their separate ways and most of the time, things are left at that.
With Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor, the circus that has followed this riveting bout as it has grown has been like nothing we have ever seen and though both men have only shared each other’s company for a limited amount of time, there are moments where it does seem as though they genuinely dislike each other. Respect is earned through fighting, yes, but in a recent interview with Sky Sports McGregor explained exactly what Floyd can do to truly earn his praise when all is said and done.
Mayweather’s stock has taken some hits in recent years, primarily due to the fact that his defensively-minded approach has seen some of his bouts – in particular, his long-awaited contest with Manny Pacquiao – come under a lot of criticism from fans who had spent their hard-earned money on what turned out to be a relatively tepid affair.
Floyd has been relentlessly promising the media and the fans recently, however, that he aims to make up for his somewhat uneventful performances in recent years with a knockout come Saturday night but McGregor, who as skilled a counter-puncher as MMA has ever known, remains doubtful.
“Respect for me is earnt through battle. If he stands in there and speaks his word of what he’s been saying, if he can get in there and implement these and come forward and give the fight he’s been talking about, he will have my respect.”
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena